And we are not ashamed to say it. This is mainly due to the fact that it will be shown on free to air television in Australia.  Which is a rare occasion that non Australian matches are actually on. The reasons for us not having paid tv are better explained here.

But there is also another reason. Preity Zinta. Those are not it but is also a part of it.

We would like to bring to your attention a player who we have taken on as our own from the beginning. You will remember him as that terrific bloke who overcame the fact that he played Tier B cricket in Sri Lanka.

I know. Tier B cricket is not something we should mess around with. It’s evil and weird. It’s the reason for  what’s happened to Rhianna. It also killed David Carradine.

We were captivated by this mysterious player from the wrong side of the domestic table.  India learned the full extent of what a Tier B player can do.  It was such pure satanic beauty. We lapped it all up.

We all did. In hindsight, we really had no choice in the matter because it was just so undeniable.

Then the most unthinkable, horrendous thing that could have ever happened – after what happened to Rhianna – happened. The team this human wonder played in got promoted to Tier A. Along with it came shameless conformance to playing proper cricket. Balls.

The man lost his magic and we soon forgot  all about him. But we have been watching him and following him at a distance.  Hoping he would rediscover his evil, cunning, wily ways.

And it seems he finally may have. Playing under the captaincy of  the ‘Mike Brearley of SL domestic 2020 cricket’ –  Jehan Mubarak  – seems to have brought the best out of him. Which in it self is kind of scary,  in a really bad way.

But if his performance in the inter-provincial final is anything to go by- this years IPL might see the return of the one we call Splendid.

His performance will be more important to Sri Lanka than any of the others playing. If he has half a decent tournament  – there will plenty of Sri Lankans who will sleep better.

Regardless – 4 for 9 off 3.2 is a good fucken way to start.

ajantha mendis flyslip ipl splendid mendis

Oh Dreary me.

This series has been built up around a whole bunch of mini shows.

Tendulkars 20th year in cricket. That’s a long time to be playing cricket Sachin. Lucky sod.

The tussle for the ICC No1 Test Ranking. Apparently either team could attain this. Which of course would be confusing to most as England are clearly no1, given that they won the Ashes.

The fact that no one really knows who will play for either team.

Sri Lanka’s batting is probably the same it was when we lost their last. I havent checked but I am sure Sanath Jayasuriya must be playing.

But Sri Lankas bowling will be interesting. We are hoping the selectors don’t do a doosey and actually pick 3 spinners. I mean ok, its India but 3 might be slightly overkill.

Nuwan, Thushara,Herath, Murali , Mathews is our choice. Do we still love Splendid? Yes, but Herath is more interesting and more importantly, in form.

The dude who got shot and King Kumar and his boi-friend Mahela need to bat well. A couple of phycotic centuries from Dilshan wont hurt.

The Indians probably dont know who they will bowl either. Zaheer is always a threat so he might get a go, although the only cricket he’s been playing is probably on his Xbox.

Ishant still rides around on the back of a performance in some test in Australia.

The key will be Harbajan and Mishra, if they are on song – Sri Lanka will struggle.

It will also be King Kumar’s first real test as a test captain.

Ok so may its not gonna be dreary after all.

ajantha mendis anjelo mathews dhoni dilshan flyslip mahela jayawardane prasanna jayawardene sangakkara splendid mendis sri lanka in india 2009 Tharanga Paranavitana thilan thushara tilan samaraweera

When your country takes part in a major world event that have the eyes of the world, and we mean the entire world, such as the uber cool ICC Champions trophy, you cannot help but get sucked in to believing they will do well.

Even though there are plenty of signs to the contrary and know you will end up looking like a fucktard to your self, let alone others.

Sri Lanka are ranked 7 or 8th in the ICC rankings. I don’t know exactly because no one really cares unless you are in the top 3.

There is a reason for that. Actually there are plenty of them.  The problem with Sri Lanka is that when they are good, they are really good.

But when they are bad they are as entertaining as a Britney Spears song.

The results over the last two years reflect this to a tee. 27 wins to 25 losses. Good one day, shithouse the next.

Over the last year or so the Sri Lankan top order all have averages below 35, apart from Dilshan who just happens to be in the form of his new life with 49.

And without Sangakkara’s support it really would have been a one man effort.

The general demise of our own Splendid Mendis as a potent threat and his relative shitting himself without Murali has cast small shadow of doubt, even in our minds,  about whether he can lead the attack in his stead.

While most were surprised that Sri Lanka were knocked out of the Champions trophy, for anyone who have followed them over the last two years it was a typical performance.

A rampaging backed up by engaging in the worst possible act in world cricket- losing to England in an ODI.

In 25 games or so, Sri Lanka have only managed to get past 250 on 9 occasions. They simply do not bad consistently well enough to win matches regularly.

That is why they are ranked some where no one cares about, Have no batsmen in the top 10 ODI rankings, keep losing at home and have been sent home packing from SA.

Sangakkara might think Sri Lanka’s fielding is appalling, but their batting is not much better.

ajantha mendis dilshan icc champions trophy 2009 jayasuriya murali sangakkara splendid mendis

The series is done.  There are some 2020 matches scheduled but that’s just for fun. It’s like the entrees in a 5 course meal. But at the end. Bad analogy yes, but it makes the point.

Below we have attempted to rate the SL players in the test and ODI series. The things we took into account include how many runs are wickets these players took. But more importantly their impact on the series and the how adapt they were in flashing their balls. Not literally of course but you get the point.

Test series

10- Kulesekara, Herath

The two players that made the biggest impact in the series.

We have said this before and we will say it again. Kulesekara shouldn’t really make it as a test player, only he does. If you want an example of hard work paying off then Nuwan is it. His work in getting the ball to move both ways had Pakistan shitting their pants.  He reminds me a lot of another Sri Lankan bowler who worked with the limited talent he had worked out a way to get wickets on subcontinental pitches through seam movement and swing. He retired a few weeks ago.

Is this the arrival of Nuwan ? The Kiwi tour might give us a better gauge.

Herath was the wild card entry that went all the way. When Murali got injured everyone focused on Mendis. Which was Pakistans biggest mistake. Herath has always been a good bowler. And like Mcgill he was probably playing in the wrong era. And from the 2nd he opened the bowling on the last day of the 1st test he didnt look back. He was helped by Sangakkara’s shrewdness in picking up that Herath was the danger man.

With Murali coming back will he get more game time against NZ ? If Mendis keeps bowling pies its very likely.

8- Sangakkara

Big runs. Big impact. And balls.

Failed in the first test but came back with two crucial innings in the 2nd.  Apart from the runs King Kumar was at his tactical best in terms of leadership and taking the opportunities that Pakistan were all too eager to offer.

Opened the bowling on day 5 on the first test with Herath when everyone thought Mendis would be the key.

Ballsy.

Threw the new ball to Herath in the 2nd.

Slighly insane but proved to be genius.

All hail the King.

7- Mathews.

It’s been a meteoric rise for Mathews. From his acrobatics in the 2020 WC to making Younis Khan his bunny. Mathews had made a big contribution to SL’s success in recent times. The thing about Mathews is that he is always in the game. Bat, ball or in the field the guy is wired for action.

Apart from a single half century he doesn’t show much in terms of runs but he kept running out of partners nearly every time he batted. If I were Mathews I wouldn’t mind a word in Kumars ear about coming up the order.

6-Thushara , Paranavitana

To say that Thushara was unplayable on the last day of the 5th test is an understatement. And he carried this form on throughout the series. Pakistan had only 1 opening stand of over 50 and that is largely due to Nuwan and Thusharas new ball antics.

These two certainly arn’t the most scariest opening bowlers in the test world right now. But they are possibly the most accurate on their day.

Paranavitana seems to be the first half of the solution to SL’s long search for two guys to replace Marvan and Sanath.

This guy has a solid technique. Plays his shots and knows where his off stump is. You can’t ask for more from your openers.

If only the dude at the other end could do the same.

Lost their balls

Splendid Mendis– Balless, Spineless, ridiculous and finally dropped. As the main spin threat in the country after Murali he didn’t really do much.

Whats going on you might wonder. It appears Splendids got the heebeegeebees. That or he is a shithouse bowler if he doesn’t pick up wickets early in his spell. They inform me he is what you might term a confidence bowler.

He was too full and flat when SL needed him. Time for a visit back to Adams peak for him we reckon. Although the Kiwis are tempting.

Warnapura

Was the first SL wicket to fall 5 times out of 6. Being an opener those stats are always going to be skewed but when you total 96 runs in 6 innings which includes a 50 you start to look pretty pathetic.

SL had just 1 opening stand over 50. Not good enough. Warnapura is dodgy outside off stump. Against better bowlers on better pitches he wouldn’t survive past the 5th over.

ODI rankings to follow.

ajantha mendis anjelo mathews malinda warnapura nuwan kulesekara paranavitana rangana herath sangakkara sri lanka v pakistan 2009 thilan thushara

-Don’t leave out Prasanna Jayawardene. Dilshan did an OK job, but at the PSS the ball will spin and I wouldn’t want Dilshan making an error at a crucial time. Plus his batting is more important to the team than anything else.

Who should they leave out? It’s a tough call. And that’s why you have selectors.

-Do get ready for a Pakitan assault. u might smile, but all it takes is for Gul to find his 2020 form for more than 5-6 overs at a stretch and Pakistan will be dangerous with the new ball.

-Pakistan’s strength is in their fast men. Which is also Sri Lanka’s weakness.

-Don’t worry too much if you loose the toss. Out of the 13 matches when the team’s won the toss and batted 6 have ended in victory, 3 in losses.

-King Kumar – don’t bat like a god in the first 20 runs of your innings. Even Kings need to ease into business. Twice he got caught on the walk in Galle. It did not look pretty and we don’t really care for it too much.

Also it would be nice if Herath comes on a bit earlier than the 47 over.

-Warnapura- do get some runs soon, your credit rating is dropping at an alarming rate.

-Mahela- don’t edge the ball outside off when your team really needs you.

-Dilshan- the 2020 world cup is over. No more scoop shots thank you very much.

-Mendis- people are asking us why we still call you splendid. It is making us very uncomfortable. Kind of like sitting on the toilet seat in winter. We don’t like it one bit and it would be nice if you picked up a few wickets.

We know you got attacked in Lahore and all that but we thought you had put that behind you in England. We understand that Pakistan are a dirty bunch who seem to have figured you out but cmmon man. You owe us.

ajantha mendis dilshan flyslip mahela jayawardane malinda warnapura sangakkara sri lanka v pakistan 2009